Friday, December 02, 2005

No Babies, No Sex

Whenever an abortion discussion comes up, there is almost universally an assertion made by the pro-choice side: it isn't fair that people who are just trying to have sex, and using contraception, should have to bear a child.

To which my reaction is:

Don’t want kids? Don’t have intercourse. Fair has nothing to do with it.

That doesn’t mean “don’t have intercourse if you don’t intend to be a parent right now”, it means “don’t have intercourse if you aren’t willing to be a parent right now, if the condom breaks or the pill was expired”. Go right ahead and take a chance if you’re willing to step up if things don’t go your way.

The best advice my dad ever gave me growing up was as a young adolescent, when he told me that it would be a damn good idea not to have intercourse with any woman that I couldn’t see marrying and starting a family with - because that’s what I might end up being expected to do.


zandperl said...

I disagree. Abortion is an option just as using a condom is an option. If you're going to have sex, you have a choice about whether to do so with protection or without. Either way if you get pregnant you have the choice to have an abortion or not.

It's similar to how when you're in a car, you have the choice to wear a seatbelt or not. And after you get in a fender bender, you have the choice to see a doctor or not. Sometimes there are more drastic situations requiring a trip to the emergency room whether you're willing or not, and sometimes a pregnancy is dangerous to the potential mother and requires an abortion.

L33tminion said...

This seems like a strawman to me. The argument of the pro-choice side is that no one should be forced to be pregnant.

If the path from conception to child was as painless and risk-free for the mother as it is for the father, then it would be a whole different story.

Robert said...

Well, minion, there's a very simple way to avoid being forced to be pregnant - don't get pregnant.

Aside from cases of rape or incest, who is being forced to engage in vaginal intercourse?

mythago said...

Without trying to TMI everyone, pregnancy can happen without vaginal intercourse.

That said, while I understand your dad's sentiment, you're really arguing for something different.

It's like saying we shouldn't patch up people who had car accidents (don't want to go off the road and hit a tree? Take the bus), or who broke their legs skiing (don't want an ACL tear? Stay off the slopes), and so on.

What's unfair is not that people who have sex have contraception fail; it's that the fact that they took a risk, however small, is the excuse for saying "you have no right to remedy the consequences of your actions". That's how we get from concern for the life of the fetus into Bizarroworld arguments that it's actually OK to murder an unborn baby, as long as the mother didn't want to have sex.

McDuff said...

Just a tangential question, while appreciating that you may not share exactly the same philosophy as your father:

In your opinion, if you get a girl pregnant, are you then compelled to marry her? I'm not talking about "supporting the child", I'm saying, if you and your high-school sweet-heart end up reproducing as a result of a hormone-fueled tryst in the back of a pickup, is that it? Forever?